Every month it seems like figuring out exactly what Google is looking for SEO-wise gets a little tougher.

In that regard, February 2014 was a pretty typical month filled with minor updates and policy changes that, taken individually, didn’t add up to much. The sum total of these changes, however, is pretty significant and shows that SEO success these days is going to go to those who can really focus on the details.

Here are a few of the SEO highlights from February 2014.

  • Top Heavy Refresh – Google’s Top Heavy update has been around for a while, so most casino affiliates are pretty familiar with it. If you’re one of the small group that hasn’t got the message about above-the-fold-advertising, now’s the time to get on board.
  • Google Searches to Feature Video Embedded Videos -  The news that Google will be embedding large videos in search results isn’t too shocking. Video content is all the rage these days and Google loves keeping eyeballs on their search results page.
  • Cutts Wants Scraper Names – Content scrapers are probably the most active black hat practitioners in the SEO world and Matt Cutts is looking to clamp down on them. He’s introduced a new scraper report form designed to really crack down on these content pirates. So if you see scraping, say something.
  • Possible Panda Update? – Hardly a month passes without a report of a potential Panda or Penguin update bubbling up on an SEO forum somewhere. This month was no exception and, like most other potential Panda reports, no one’s really sure one way or the other.
  • Cutts Talks Content Quality – Will jargon-heavy content rank worse than similar content that’s not quite so technical? Matt Cutts recently took on that question and the short answer is, “probably.” Though Cutts says there are exceptions, he made it clear that simple is probably better when it comes to content.
  • What About Poor Grammar in Comments? Ok you’re pretty sharp and buy into quality content but your readers’ grammar could use a little work; is that something that can impact your rankings? Last month Cutts said not to worry too much about lousy grammar in the comments section, but to still keep an eye out for spam (which will be about 90% of the comments on most blogs anyways).

So what’s the lesson from February’s SEO news? Pay attention to those Matt Cutts videos; keep your content clean, but not-too-technical; and don’t worry too much about Panda updates.


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